Sunday, May 29, 2011

A nice evening out with friends

Went to Shokudo for a small celebration with friends. Amazing number of them had never been there, others have been there many times. Lots of "so, what's good?" going around. The lines are going to be longer now...

Much fun, good eats, great peeps. Need to do this more often.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

(Re)Experimenting with reverse-lens close-ups...

Since some of my Flickr friends have been playing, and exhibiting their substantial prowess, with reverse-lens close ups, I thought I would revisit the technique.

I found my adapter (the BR-2A, for Nikon people), mounted the 50mm f/1.2 AIS (because it was on the desk), and proceeded out into the drizzly morning. Since it was an initial foray, I dispensed with the support system, which was probably a good choice.

Chive blossom, anthers only
Wobble-focus technique was the play of the day; not enough focus leeway to make a difference, especially at f/1.2. And I found myself leaning over obstacles, like for the image at the top of this post.

Still, it was interesting. And since I always have a 50mm with me, I'll just throw the adapter in the bag. It's just a ring, so not much more bulk.

If you are looking for extreme close-ups, you may be better served with extension tubes, close-up adapters, bellows, or reversing a lens onto another. But this method is quick, easy, and inexpensive; you can even dispense with the adapter and handhold it.

I shall have to look into this further. ;)

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Nikki Jennifer Photography is soon to have an anniversary!

A fabulous photographer, a mother and a good friend, will soon be reaching a milestone. Nikki Jennifer Photography will be 1 year old within 2 months!

Nikki is an Oahu, Hawaii-based "natural light" photographer who will bring out the "you" in you. She is very easy to get at ease with, has a unique photographic style, and cares very much about you, from contact to the final delivery. Put yourself in her care, and she will deliver. Not to worry; you will get what you pay for.

Gotta tell you; she has this crazy knack of "finding the light." Astonishing.

To help celebrate this upcoming achievement, check out her:
Website and Galleries - See what she does and how to get in touch!
Facebook Fan Page - "Like" to show her some love!

Please spread the word. If you like her work, please consider giving her your business.

Hmm, we need to throw a baby luau, or something...

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Playing with some camera protection


Noting that I seem to be in increasingly rough conditions with my gear, e.g., rain, waterfall spray, surf spray, etc., I thought to look at some protection. A condom for the camera, if you will.

I have had the Op/Tech Rainsleeve for quite awhile, for emergencies. Of course, I never seemed to have it on hand when said emergency happened, so I either ate it or bailed. Fortunately, most of my gear is weather-resistant, salt notwithstanding.

With the winter weather as heavy as it's been this year (it's rain here, no snow), I figured I should look at a more substantial solution. Which led me to the Think Tank Hydrophobia 70-200. Very substantial. Tried the "don't need no stinkin' manual" approach at first; it's like a new father putting on a diaper for the first time. Hint: read the instructions. It's not long, and can save you some grief. I actually found everything myself, eventually, but going back and reading was a "D'oh!" moment. Still, not something you can slap on quickly, although I can see it getting quicker with practice. And slower with panic.

Anyways, diaper-installation problems aside, it works as advertised. The one thing is the strap system. They have a strap on the outside, with in internal support and storage system, so you can carry this when the shroud is in use. Practically, having a pro body + 70-200mm on a skinny strap is not going to cut it; your shoulder will die. Tripod/monopod use, absolutely great, and the supplied strap can be the "oops!" strap for monopod users.

Getting that internal support strap can be a bit of a bear at first. Pre-fit and practice. The eyepiece requires an additional purchase, based on your camera's eyepiece. In my case, it is the screw-in type, and I use an add-on cup. So I need t unscrew that, put everything together (blind, by the way), then put the cup back on, if you wish. And then, in my case, the viewfinder cover is also the release for the eyepiece, and when you want to take it off, it is tucked behind the heavy rubber weather-seal piece; takes a little digging to get to it to release properly.

Value? I would say it is a "your call." Think Tank is not cheap by any means. If you are looking for the cheap, occasional usage, consider the Op/Tech. Cheap enough to toss after a couple of uses. If you plan to do this a lot, then this may be the way to go.

[edit] Just saw a rather geeky, but interesting possibility if rain is your only concern. Look up "Probrella."

Monday, May 2, 2011

Twin Spouts

Experiencing some crazy weather over the last week. Thunderstorms and showers, and now waterspouts off Honolulu Harbor. Wild!

And I got to shoot bolt lightning for the first time; I usually only get blinking clouds.

The first time I saw waterspouts and lightning was off West Beach, Ewa, some time back before history began. Now I see them both again, together again. How weird is that?

I'll enjoy this while I can...